Things to note when thinking ONVIF

OnvifAs you may be aware, ONVIF has arrived and that is a good thing.
The ability to chose a camera that suits your niche and use the head end / NVR of your choice is a great thing.


Before jumping into ONVIF head first, I thought it would be best you understand the areas that you have most likely not been told in the sales pitch.
So over the next few weeks, I will be sharing some snippets of information with you to help prevent your  first ONVIF system burning a hole in your bottom line.

This week I would like to discuss the compatibility of an ONVIF camera.

So for those of you that have installed an End to End system would know that adding a camera is a simple process and you know it will All Just Work as it has been designed by the one vendor for FULL COMPATIBILITY.

ONVIF is not this simple.

First you have to know the ONVIF Camera will actually work!
I know that sounds crazy but in conjunction with one of my preferred VMS vendors we are testing every camera the manufacturers will give us access to and they don’t all work.
In fact we recommend if you are going to use a ONVIF camera  to get the VMS manufacturer to confirm they have tested it on their platform.


More Things To Note When Thinking ONVIF CCTV

How Well Does a Video Surveillance System Design Based on ONVIF Work?

Australian Standards for CCTV

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  1. Toni August 23, 2011 at 1:48 am #

    Dear Tim,

    Do you have some info about which systems are fully ONVIF ready?

    I work close to Panasonic and Mobotix, sometimes Axis comes up, and although we still don’t sell differents vendors integrated CCTV-IP systems, it seems we shall soon.

    Thank you!


    • Tim Norton August 23, 2011 at 10:17 pm #

      ONVIF was meant to be THE ANSWER but I believe it has not actually added much value. I use to sell IndigoVision and the announcement of them becoming ONVIF compliant was great news.
      Unfortunately when the ONVIF cameras started to hit the market, all they have to do to be compliant is fit one of the sections of ONVIF. Not all of it.

      When I wrote this article, there was minimal support for PTZ as you could not call a preset. I believe that is now implemented but there is still minimal support for alarms, not support for relays at the camera and most functions you get outside of the real basics are not supported.

      I believe you should buy an end to end solution from one vendor as it is going to remove a whole lot of pain in the install.

      I do not believe Mobotix are doing ONVIF as yet but Axis and Panasonic are.

      If you have a look at DVtel or Genetec VMS, you will see they report to be ONVIF compliant but if you look closer, only basic features come in under ONVIF. All the things that make there VMS packages nice are under their own API implementations. So why bother with ONVIF with those vendors and I am guessing many others if you can get a better result from their own API’s?

      Hope this helps.
      It is a very tricky one to specify and ensure you get what you wanted.

    • Lawrence April 16, 2012 at 6:27 am #

      You could try avigilon recorder.

      they claimed full onvif compliant and ready to serve all onvif cameras


      • Tim Norton April 16, 2012 at 7:03 am #

        Do Avigalon also have their own ONVIF cameras?
        I am thinking due to the JPEG2000 compression maybe not.

        Could you confirm this?

  2. Lawrence April 16, 2012 at 8:10 pm #

    I confirmed Avigilon has own ONVIF camera however i have yet to test other ONVIF cameras (Axis, Panasonic onvif by september 2012, and Arecont Onvif by end jun 2012) to work with Avigilon recorder.

    does anyone tested?

    no harm to explore.